Opinion: Marion needs to invest in green energy

Aug 29, 2022

To The Editor:

The problem is real, caused by humans, and potentially catastrophic. The impetus to act locally to address global issues stems from a community’s desire to build a better, healthier, and more responsible community.

In that effort, Marionites must consider endorsing on-site green energy systems: heat pumps, solar panels, wind turbines, and geothermal energy or a combination thereof, to energize the new Department of Public Works and Marine Center buildings, and the newly planned housing developments: The Cottages and Heron Cove.

A green energy systems approach for all restorative and new construction would assist Marion’s no longer-fully functioning natural ecosystems from collapsing completely.

Thinking locally, recovering and restoring a collapsing ecosystem that supported coastal fisheries requires stopping all flows of nutrients from fertilizers and sewage across large catchments—Aucoot Cove and Buzzards Bay—and stopping the use of fossil fuels.

Thinking globally, each supercharged natural disaster produces ironic snapshots of a climate inhospitable to the industry most responsible for climate change—oil and gas. In 2017, Hurricane Harvey, a category 4 storm, dumped five feet of rain on Houston and produced upwards of 60 separate tornadoes during five days of horrific destruction.

We know that allowing greenhouse gas emissions to rise year after year is transforming everything about our world: communities are drowning, wildfires are raging and our children will spend their lives fleeing from vicious storms, prolonged droughts, food shortages, fierce floods, and catastrophic heat waves.

Marionites do not have to do anything to bring about this bleak future. We just continue what we are doing—nothing.

Or, we can make an inauspicious future less ominous by collectively insisting that new construction projects have complete and total on-site green-powered energy systems that exclude fossil fuels.

Eileen J. Marum